Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Arts and National Economic Recovery

We're all familiar with our no-coast, landlocked status--our plight here in Colorado is that it's easy to feel disconnected from what's going on a national level. And we certainly have had enough excitement in state and local government to keep our attention away from the upcoming presidential transition. But I have been reading a lot in the past few weeks about the presidential transition, and what is particularly compelling to me is the work that many national arts advocacy groups are doing to make sure that arts and culture are at the forefront of Obama's policy-making.

I'm reprinting this directly from the Americans for the Arts website, because I think it is so important:
Message from Bob Lynch, President and CEO, Americans for the Arts
"As our country embraces a new presidential administration, millions of people across the United States are hoping that this change in government can help usher in a new dawn for the arts. For years now, thousands of Americans alike - teachers, students, artists, community leaders, government officials, parents, and children - have felt a groundswell in creativity and in culture in our country. We can see and feel in our communities, schools, churches, and homes that the United States is on the verge of a new cultural renaissance. People in every community are working toward a new era of growth and expansion for the arts.

The recommendations of the policy brief can and will make a positive change for the more than 100,000 arts organizations in our country and the millions of Americans who value the arts in their day-to-day lives. It is our hope that by further empowering the arts we can bring our nation together in means both intellectual and spiritual, and economic and creative."
Please go their website and learn more about the incredibly valuable work they are doing.

A petition is also circulating that may be of interest to you readers out there: Quincy Jones has started a petition to ask President-Elect Obama to appoint a Secretary of the Arts. While many other countries have had Ministers of Art or Culture for centuries, The United States has never created such a position. Click here to sign the petition.

Personally, I'd rather sign a petition for the creation of an "Arts Czar." But then, I've always been partial to assonance.

1 comment:

Bettina said...


Drew McManus argues against creating a cabinet-level position in the post above. It's a lively debate, to be sure.